Okay, so I’m finally away. There have been several delays again this year, partly my choices and partly WestJet. The situation in the UK (covid-wise) wasn’t looking like it was heading in the right direction which gave me pause. However, the main reason for the delay was the weather; both on the Island and in Britain. It has been an amazing summer in BC (often much too hot) and I had almost forgotten how beautiful and fun it could be.

I did some 4x4ing around the Mt. Washington area and found some waterfalls and other interesting and wonderful spots.

I finally managed to find Paradise Falls!
Lots of pretty little ponds around Mt. Washington

I swam in the ocean for the first time in a surprising number of years, had a wonderful weekend boating with Steve and Adrienne, went skinny-dipping in a cold mountain stream, and had some great mountain bike rides with old friends. Back when I still ‘worked’ I was often away at sea during the summer or had other obligations and had stopped doing things like that. It was really fun to rediscover what had been a big part of my life years ago.

A couple of highlights of staying later were the class reunion that Don and Lance put together and Abigail’s graduation! It was really a blast seeing some old friends after many (many many) years and catching up at the reunion and I was so proud and honoured to be able to join Abi and her family for such a momentous occasion.

Our new doctor!

In addition to all that, the weather ‘over there’ was rather strange. As usual, I missed the lovely spring in April, and they were then hit with alternating heat waves and torrential rains.

April Point sunset

Put all that together and I just kept putting it off. It’s now early August and I feel good that this is the right time… I don’t plan on staying longer than a couple of months, just enough to give the boat a workout, see some good friends, and rekindle the romance of the canals. I’ll likely stay in the Llangollen/Chester area as it’s familiar and easy to return to the marina in case of sudden changes in the covid situation (like last year).

Speaking of Covid, here’s my first rant: What the hell is Boris Johnson thinking by allowing (fully-vaxxed) Americans in without quarantine but not Canadians? They can even travel through Canada! Is the Queen not on our money? Are we not good enough Commonwealth members? Are our vaccination rates not higher and our case numbers lower than in the US? Maybe we should pitch some tea over the side of a boat… If there’s anything that would convince me to join the ‘to hell with the commonwealth, let’s become a republic’ crowd like Australia, this might be it. Just incensed. Our own government isn’t blameless, they bowed down and accepted it like the subservient suck-ups they often are in international affairs (no matter what party is in power at the time). Rant over (for now).

The flights over were fine, all things considered. However, you’d think with all my years working in government that I’d be better at sleeping sitting upright. Just can’t do it. The food on board has improved marginally since last year, at least it wasn’t a cold sandwich tossed at you from the aisle. I’m not completely sure what it was though, “chicken” apparently. I managed to get to the lounge in Calgary and had an actual meal before boarding so I didn’t much care about the onboard food anyway. And the wine was adequate.

The standard Departure shot
The famous Victoria Station in London

A couple of days later now and I’m on the boat getting her squared away. She survived the winter admirably, with no significant issues. The solar panels kept the batteries topped up so they’re in great shape. She stayed dry inside, no mildew. The spiders enjoyed themselves but have now (mostly) been evicted. All in all, just fine.

My food delivery got messed up a bit, a day late but I was able to buy farm-fresh eggs and homemade meat pies at the marina office so I’m not starving! Lots of leftover cans and packaged food from last year too.

I sent my Day 2 covid test off, I have another to do on Day 8 (although, if I pay MORE I could get a Day 5 “Test to Release” kit – not sure why I can’t just use the Day 8 one that I have already??) Did I mention there might be more ranting?

That’s it for now. I don’t expect much to happen until I’m out cruising next week. If something does occur that’s blog-worthy, both of you will see it!

Marina view

22 Replies to “Back to the canals, 2021 version”

    1. Thanks Mark! It was great catching up, I’m excited to hear more about your upcoming adventures!

  1. Welcome back – and welcome to the ‘ rant at BJ club’! Some of us have been raging about most of BJ’s decisions since the pandemic started!
    Regards Derek & Jayne

    1. Thanks Derek! I’ve tried to stay ‘non-political’ on here but this one has really chapped my ass! Just totally unreasonable and dumb. Vaxxed is vaxxed!

  2. Hi Doug, we are at the Foxton locks, having gone through them yesterday. I’m now down at the bottom lock shop with my laundry in. We tried to get a day five “get out of jail free” pass when we first arrived in England, but apparently you have to do it before you get here, as we were unable to do so. So we thought, what the heck? We’ll just wait and get day eight done. We had both of our test kits sent to the marina through boots. Mine were promptly tested and I receive the reply in an email, but Sandy‘s first test results didn’t even show up until two days ago, which is a month after he took the test!
    I agree with your first rant, it is ridiculous!
    Have a great day and talk later!

    1. I haven’t heard about my day 2 results yet either but it’s only been a couple of days. That’s a great spot to do laundry, nice, friendly little pub. Strange but it always takes much longer for my laundry to finish there! 😂😂

  3. Great you made it back Doug, enjoy….by the way, Bojo is a knob…..we love you Canadians here.

  4. OMG…it’s like we are back on the Tully. All that’s missing is you prattling on about Downtown Abbey and us bitching about some of our co-workers. 😉 Be safe Dug and enjoy your short time there! Another heat wave hits us today.

  5. Just thinking about you the other day, as a matter of fact.

    Summer is miserable where we are between being virus distant, & fire smoke trapped, I would say we despise summer. Both shots done but the Delta is in big numbers in out Interior Health district.

    I also do not know what US people are allowed to come here with the numbers exploding again, fully immunized or not. I think we’re asking for trouble.

    I hope you can stay safe in the UK, as their numbers don’t seem good either.

      1. Am in West Kirby (not far – look it up ) over the weekend. Are you drop in able on Monday perhaps???

        1. I’m still in quarantine, not allowed to leave until Tuesday (assuming I still test negative) and I don’t have a car. But if you could drop by I’d like a visit!

  6. Glad to see you’ve busted loose and are now back in the UK. Looking forward to a few YouTube videos during your two months stay.

  7. Haere Mai, welcome back to the UK. We arrived back last Friday 6th, got our Day 2 tests at Heathrow which saved a lot of faffing around from Debdale. Areandare had also been taken over by eight-legged creatures, hopefully most of them have been evicted or are in hiding now …

    We’re heading Chester way so will look out for you. It would be fun to meet up one day. Enjoy your time on the cut 😉

  8. That’s awesome that you got back to the canals! Looking forward to some great UK pics!!!
    How much longer are you in isolation?
    Are you in the Chester area still? One of my favorite spots to be!! Enjoy your time there.

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